News & Events

Animal Behavior Majors: You might be interested...

Feel free to pass on to those interested. We have several Ph.D. research assistantships available in fall 2022. The list below contains some of our available assistantships. Please note that this is not a complete list of opportunities. Prospective students are welcome to reach out to any individual faculty member or the graduate program director to learn more. The majority of Ph.D. students are supported as Graduate Research Assistants during their tenure (typically 5 years). These assistantships provide an annual salary of $30,312, and tuition and health insurance is provided for all students.


PhD Assistantships:


  1. Environmental Science and Policy Ph.D. Program, Abess Center, EVR
  2. NOAA Living Marine Resources Cooperative Science Center, Dr. Elizabeth Babcock, MBE 
  3. FOCUS: Florida Current and Sea Level, Dr. Lisa Beal, OCE
  4. Examining the Causes of Trends in the Context of a Variable Subpolar North Atlantic Ocean, Dr. Amy Clement, ATM
  5. Impacts of Atmospheric Reactions on Air Quality, Dr. Cassandra Gaston, ATM/OCE
  6. The Role of Marine Teleost Fish in the Inorganic Carbon Cycle, Dr. Martin Grosell, MBE 
  7. Dynamics of the Agulhas Return Current, Dr. Igor Kamenkovich, OCE
  8. Flood Risk & Climate Change Prepardness, Dr. Katharine Mach, EVR
  9. Water Vapor ‘Lakes’ Over the Tropical Indian Ocean, Dr. Brian Mapes ATM/MPO 
  10. Ecology and Evolution of Giant Viruses, Dr. Mohammad Moniruzzaman, MBE
  11. Investigating the Role of Metastable Carbonates in the Oceanic Carbon Cycle, Dr. Amanda Oehlert, MGS
  12. Shallow Marine Diagenesis in 3D, Dr. Amanda Oehlert, MGS
  13. Satellite Remote Sensing of Land-Falling Hurricanes, Dr. Roland Romeiser, OCE
  14. Ocean-Atmosphere Interactions During Hurricanes, Dr. Nick Shay, MPO/OCE
  15. Ocean Heat Uptake and Global Climate Sensitivity, Dr. Brian Soden, ATM/MPO
  16. Aerosol-Cloud Interactions in Global Climate Models, Dr. Brian Soden, ATM/MPO
  17. Radiative Influence on Tropical Cyclone Development, Dr. Brian Soden, ATM/MPO 


Virtual Event coming up:


Any questions, please let me know!



Josh Coco, Ed. D.
Assistant Dean, Rosenstiel School
Tel: (305) 421.4002
Fax: (305) 421.4711

University of Miami
RSMAS Campus – 105C
4600 Rickenbacker Causeway
Miami, FL 33149-1031

The Indiana DNR wildlife health team currently has a couple of open positions for seasonal technicians, and I wanted to share with CISAB students. I think it would be a good opportunity for anyone interested in wildlife diseases/conservation. I’ve included the link to the job listing below.

Danta is pleased to announce our 2021/2022 field courses in tropical biology. Our courses are intended for undergraduates or early graduate level students who have a keen interest in tropical ecosystems and conservation, but have little or no experience of working in a tropical environment. Participants may enroll on either a credit or non-credit basis.

As much of our advertising is done by word-of-mouth, we encourage you to spread the word by forwarding this information to students or friends who may be interested in our programs.

For more information, please visit our website at and/or email For an alumni perspective on our programs, please see our blog DANTAisms -

Methods in Primate Behavior and Conservation

Dates:  Dec. 28 - Jan. 10, 2022 and July 3-18, 2022

Program Fee: $2600

Application deadline:  December 1, 2021 and May 15, 2022


Course Description:  DANTA Tropical Biology and Conservation Field Courses 2021/2022

Wildlife Conservation and Sustainability

Dates: Dec. 28 - Jan. 10, 2022 and June 13 - 28, 2022

Program fee: $2600

Application deadline: December 1, 2021 and May 15, 2022

Course Description: DANTA Tropical Biology and Conservation Field Courses 2021/2022

Field Excursion

All courses include a visit to a wildlife rehabilitation center, sustainable chocolate plantation and dolphin and snorkeling trip of the Golfo Dulce. We will stay overnight on the Boruca Indigenous Reserve where we will learn about the community and their traditional lifeways, and help with needed projects. Every effort is made to implement eco-friendly and socially responsible practices into our day-to-day operations, field courses and overall mission.



DANTA: Association for Conservation of the Tropics

PO Box 411

1200 Veterans Memorial Blvd

Huntington, WV 25701


Animal Behavior/Reptile Caretaker Internship

Internship Summary

At Goldleaf Hydroponics we have Bloomington’s largest collection on public display of reptiles and amphibians. Specimens include over 30 types of iguanas, geckos, lizards, monitors, chameleons, skinks, turtles, tegus, frogs, newts, salamanders, tortoises, snakes, and the collection frequently grows in diversity. The focus of this internship is reptile care and enclosure maintenance. Daily care consists of removing uneaten food and waste from the enclosures, giving fresh water to the animals, feeding fresh vegetables and insects to the appropriate animals, and wiping down the tanks. Water based enclosures need periodic water tests and changes. Tanks with media need to be watered in when necessary, and high humidity enclosures need misted occasionally. Certain large lizards and tortoises need daily baths or soaks in water. Interns will also tend and breed feeder insects like crickets, mealworms, superworms, flightless fruit flies, and rodents like mice and frozen rats. Intern is expected to devote 10 hours per week minimum at Goldleaf Hydroponics. This internship is created in partnership with the Animal Behavior department at Indiana University. For more information visit IU’s official page here.

Required Qualifications

Animal behavior majors preferred. Requirements include experience with reptiles and experience with plants or horticulture is a bonus. Applicants should be comfortable handling various animals with a quick and steady hand. Attention to detail and initiative is a must as micromanaging the enclosures is the ultimate task. If time allows, the intern will have the opportunity to construct and convert existing tanks into bioactive enclosures using isopods and springtails to maintain a living ecosystem.

Must be able to work in warehouse environment and be able to lift 50 pounds frequently.


Eligible for ABEH-X473 internship credit or unpaid for a commitment of at least 10 hours per week.

Masters project in animal behavior

We seek an individual interested in conducting a project on Octodon degus (a social rodent) social structure. The student will join Dr. Loren Hayes’ lab group at the University of Tennessee at Chattanooga (to begin in January 2022) and work towards a Master’s degree in Environmental Science.


Masters project aims: (1) use a long-term dataset to answer questions about the stability of social relationships in Octodon degus and (2) develop a method to monitor social relationships in the field.



January-May 2022: $6000 stipend + tuition waiver

May-August 2022: $4000

August-December 2022: $4000 (student responsible for 1-2 credits) + travel to and housing in Chile (pending COVID safety assessment and university approval)

January – December 2023: TBD

A grant proposal to support the project in 2022-2023 has been submitted. The student will also be able to apply for other funding options from the University of Tennessee at Chattanooga and a possible second field season in Chile.  




United States citizen

A strong interest in animal behavior

Relevant coursework completed: Animal Behavior (or Behavioral Ecology), Ecology, Evolution

GPA 3.0 or higher

Previous research experience

Physically fit, able to lift heavy equipment, work long hours in challenging environmental conditions

Able to start graduate school in January 2022



Basic knowledge of R

Understanding of social network analyses

Experience working with wild, small mammals

Spanish language proficiency

Presentation(s) at scientific meeting, or publication(s) in peer-reviewed journals


For more information about the University of Tennessee at Chattanooga, please visit For more information about the Environmental Science graduate program, see


If interested, please submit the following in a single PDF to Loren Hayes ( and Adriana Maldonado-Chaparro ( i) 1 page cover letter indicating a willingness to start in January 2022 and research interests/experience, ii) resume with contact information, iii) unofficial transcripts, and iv) names and contact information of two academic references. The pdf name should be lastname_firstname.pdf. Please include ‘Masters position’ in the email heading. Submissions received by 15 October 2021 will be given priority review.




Loren D. Hayes, PhD (He/Him pronouns)


Department of Biology, Geology, & Environmental Science

University of Tennessee at Chattanooga

Chattanooga, TN 37403


Associate Editor

Journal of Mammalogy

Call for Participants: NSF Funded Tropical Forest Research in Costa Rica Summer 2022
We are seeking to fill five independent student research positions for an NSF International Research
Experience for Students project examining tropical forest conservation in Costa Rica for 10 weeks
from approximately May 23 to Aug. 1, 2022. Participants will conduct research projects focused on
the broad theme of evaluating the extent to which differing economic and participatory incentives
and agricultural practices influence tropical forest conservation outcomes. Potential research methods
include censusing primate populations; quantifying differences in primate behavior; measuring
primate fecal hormone, immunoglobulin, or toxicant levels and/or gut microbiome diversity;
conducting interviews and surveys of local landowners, government officials, and other stakeholders;
measuring water and air quality; and quantifying forest characteristics using GIS and field methods.
Each project will be designed by the student participant working with their project advisors. Students
will be advised by Dr. Michael Wasserman (Indiana University, Department of Anthropology &
Human Biology Program) and Dr. Peter Beck (St. Edward’s University, Environmental Science &
Policy) and work in collaboration with the Organization for Tropical Studies in Costa Rica. We are
targeting highly motivated and independent upper level undergraduate and early graduate students
with limited previous independent international research experience. Students that have recently
graduated with their bachelor’s or master’s degree and have little prior international research
experience are also eligible. Students from underrepresented groups in STEM fields and those that
are fluent in Spanish are especially encouraged to apply. Successful applicants will be self-motivated,
able to deal with uncertainties of field conditions, and comfortable living in remote settings with
basic living conditions, including shared rooms or dorms. All research, living, and travel expenses
will be covered and a small stipend will be provided. Upon completing fieldwork, participants will
continue working with their advisors to develop their papers for conference presentations and/or
publication. Please contact Dr. Michael Wasserman ( for
ecological/biological/primate research questions and Dr. Peter Beck ( for
social or policy research questions. For more information on the project, read here.
To apply, please contact Dr. Wasserman and Dr. Beck by email to express interest in the position and
include your CV and unofficial transcript. After an initial discussion, each participant will submit a
two-page (single-spaced, not including works cited) proposal including a brief literature review,
research hypotheses/objectives/questions, and study design with intended methodology by Oct. 15,
2021. Applicants will be notified by Nov. 1, 2021, enabling current students to register for either a
class or independent study credits with Dr. Wasserman or Dr. Beck during the Spring 2022 semester
during which they will continue developing their research methods and prepare for fieldwork.

Title: A-401- Special Topics in Avian Conservation: Environmental Change and Resilience

Instructor: Distinguished Professor Ellen Ketterson

Days and Time: Tuesday and Thursday 1:10-2:25 pm

There will be one field trip on a Saturday, likely date is October 16th (subject to change), students expected to attend, will have rain date as possible, Will last ~7AM-2PM

The format will be assigned readings for Tuesdays for summary and discussion, and an opportunity to hear from an expert speaker on the same topic on Thursdays.  Some weeks may begin with a speaker and end with a discussion.  We will mix it up based on speaker availability.

The course is listed under animal behavior (AB)(A-401) and Biology (Bio)(L-410) and for graduate students (Biol Z620)

Why is it important for students to take this course?
Earth is experiencing its 6th mass extinction, biodiversity is in steep decline, the potential consequences are alarming, the time to act is now. Students will learn the dimensions of the problem as seen through a series of perspectives - legal, humanistic, biological, socio-ecological. Students will engage in devising solutions. This course counts towards the Evolutionary/Ecological Perspective.

Course title: Animal Conservation A401

Day and time: Tuesday, Thursday, 3:15-4:30 pm

Adjunct lecturer: Adam Fudickar

Prerequisite: BIOL-L111

Course description: Following an introduction to the field of animal conservation, students in this course will learn about recent advancements in biology that contribute to animal conservation efforts. Students taking the course will learn how research in ecology, evolution, behavior, physiology, molecular biology, cognition, and development are used by scientists and conservation practitioners to help protect animal populations.This course counts towards the Evolutionary/Ecological Perspective.


I411/511 Animal-Computer Interaction Methods:  Games for Animals 

Fall 2021 -- Meets in E122 on Mondays, from 6:45 p.m.–9:20 p.m. EST 

Dr. Christopher Flynn Martin, Instructor 


Animals can use computers too. The emerging field of Animal Computer Interaction (ACI) explores conceptual and practical aspects of how animals interact with modern technology. Primates in captivity, for example, often participate in computer touch-panel tasks for research and enrichment purposes. In developing such kinds of computer tasks, it is necessary to create a User Experience (UX) that targets the physical and mental capabilities of a given species, and to build hardware and software that is informed by relevant research findings from the fields of animal behavior and cognition. This course introduces cutting-edge Animal-Computer Interaction (ACI) methods with a focus on how they are used to enhance animal welfare, enrichment, husbandry, and cognitive research opportunities in domestic, wild, agricultural, zoo, sanctuary, and university settings. It will also take a critical approach and consider key challenges relating to access, ethics, implementation, scale, and evaluation of ACI methods. The curriculum is designed for students to assist them in developing strategies and technological skills to work amid the rapidly evolving landscape of animal care, research, conservation, and management.  No previous programming experience is necessary. 

At the conclusion of the course students will be able to:  


  • Critically analyze both the opportunities and the pitfalls that emerge when working with technology to address captive animal enrichment, husbandry, and research goals.  
  • Connect relevant findings from the field of animal cognition and behavioral ecology to enhance and improve User-Experiences for animals-computer interactions.  
  • Manage software platforms such as Microsoft Visual Studio, Sketchup, and Cura.  
  • Gain fundamental programming skills needed to write simple software applications.  
  • Gain familiarity with hardware for prototyping devices for animals, including sensors, automated food pellet dispensers, motors, speakers, and lights.  
  • Participate in hand-on fabrication and 3d printing lessons in a fully equipped prototyping lab.  


This seminar fulfills the laboratory course requirement for Animal Behavior Majors.  It also fulfills one of the requirements for the ACI Cognate and Minor, the PhD Minor, and the INFO MS and PhD tracks in Animal Informatics. 

Dr. Christopher Martin is a cognitive scientist, primatologist, innovative software and interface designer, and Indy Zoo resident research scientist.  He is an adjunct professor in IUB’s Department of Informatics as well as the Center for the Integrative Study of Animal Behavior. 

INFO 414/515/609 Animal-Computer Interaction Seminar:  Technology for Animals 

A 13-week, Fall 2021 course meeting once a week on Tuesday evenings, 6:50PM-8:05PM EST. 

Dr. Christena Nippert-Eng, Instructor 


This exploratory seminar serves as an introduction to Animal-Computer Interaction (ACI). Our goal:  to spark our ACI imaginations!  We focus on five emerging areas:  enrichment; animal cognition; automated quality of life data capture and analysis for captive animal health and wellness; wildlife tracking and monitoring; and education and interspecies relationships.  

In order to allow practitioners from outside of Bloomington to participate in this class (e.g., zoo keepers, wildlife rehabilitators, conservation officers, farmers, researchers, and those in the pet industry) this class has been intentionally designed as a web-based course.  Students engage the weekly content independently, then come together once a week for a live (synchronous) discussion time, where we also get to meet and ask questions of that week’s guest lecturer. 

This seminar fulfills one of the requirements for the ACI Cognate and Minor, the PhD Minor, and the INFO MS and PhD tracks in Animal Informatics. 

Weekly Topics 

Week 1  Introduction and Logistics  

Week 2 Ethics and ACI – How shall we live together?  Does morality fall only within the purview of humans?  What personal guidelines and commitments would you, as an ACI researcher, make to your users, both human and nonhuman?  Ethical concerns and dilemmas are ever-present for those who work with -- and for – nonhuman animals.   

Week 3 “Animals”, “technology”, and ACI -- What is an animal, which ones get our attention, and, in ACI, what kinds of attention are they getting? What are the possibilities of thinking and working with less popular species/ACI users, and more uncommon ways to think about – and work with -- the more popular ones? Guest lecturer:  Dr. Alexis Peirce Caudell, IUB Informatics 

Week 4 ACI and the Animals Left Behind (aka, “Design, Disasters, Data Science, and Dogs”) – How can we use AI to better study animals, design and run shelters, connect human adopters with the right animal, and help the nonhuman victims of wildfires, hurricanes, nuclear disasters, civil war …and pandemics?  Guest lecturer:  Dr. David Wild, IUB Informatics 

Week 5 ACI, Enrichment, and Design -- What is enrichment?  How has our understanding of – and commitment to -- enriching the daily experiences of captive animals evolved, especially in zoos and domestic settings?  How do we know what an animal likes?  What they need?  The philosophy and practices of co-designing, along with other stakeholders in the process, can be the difference between success and failure in our designs.  Guest lecturer:  Cassie Kresnye, IUB Informatics 

Week 6 ACI and ARI – Animals have inspired robotic design for some time but designing robots *for* animals -- and studying the interactions between them – is a brand-new effort.  This week, we explore the nascent field of “Animal-Robot Interaction” (ARI).  We look at zoomorphic robots built for people; what happens when animals interact with robots made for people; and the design and use of robots purposefully built to work with and among animals.  Guest lecturer:  Sawyer Collins, IUB Informatics 

Week 7 ACI and Animal Cognition – Cognition research among nonhuman primates started in the US in the 1920s.  We look at touchscreen research especially here and in Japan, including the software designed for Koko’s computer and the state-of-the-art, path-breaking hardware and software designed for the cognitive enrichment of today’s primates living in zoos.  Guest lecturers:  Dr. Larry Yaeger (Google, IUB Informatics) and Dr. Christopher Martin (Director of Research at Indianapolis Zoo, IUB Informatics). 

Week 8 ACI, Cognition, Sight, and Sound – The extraordinary work of Denise Herzing with wild dolphins is our focal point for thinking about the need to understand how a species communicates to understand how they think. The remarkable work of our own Justin Wood serves to fuel our thoughts on vision and learning with (biological and virtual!) chicks.  We consider sound and sight as enrichment, too – either by themselves, or in addition to other senses.  Guest Lecturer:  Dr. Justin Wood, IUB Informatics. 

Week 9 ACI and Animals *as* Technology.  For our first week on the subject of health, wellness, and population management, we focus on the needs and business of bees, on the idea of animals as technology, and, by focusing on robotic bees, the idea of technology as animals.  Subtheme this week:  entrepreneurship and ACI!  Guest lecturer:  Ellie Symes, the Bee Corp. 

Week 10 ACI and Conservation:  Bloomington and Beyond -- Wildlife tracking and monitoring for health, wellness, and population management.  We start with white-tailed deer right here in our own backyards, move to the broader territory of North America, then Africa, Australia, and Asia to learn about a wide range of tracking and monitoring needs and technologies.  Guest lecturer: Dr. Joe Caudell, Assistant director of Indiana’s Department of Natural Resources, Division of Fish & Wildlife, Office of Science and Research.  

Week 11 More on ACI and Rural Indiana – Hunting and smart farming.  The culture and technologies of hunting here in Indiana, from the ethics of “Fair Chase” and growing data literacy and science-based conservation, to the emerging data-driven agricultural practices and cultures here, across the country, and around the world.  Guest lecturer:  Dr. Norman Makoto Su, IUB Informatics 

Week 12 An ACI Grand Finale -- We wrap up with the data science-driven work of Dr. Patrick Shih, co-Chair of the Animal Informatics programs here at IUB.  Dr. Shih’s research has been funded by organizations as diverse as PALS, Agape, and Strides to Success; WildCare and the Bloomington and Anderson Animal Shelters, and the Indianapolis Zoo; not to mention the Max-Planck Institutes, Templeton, and National Science Foundations, the US National Parks Service and the Yellowstone Park Foundation, as well as the Cornell Laboratory of Ornithology and the EBird initiative, the Smithsonian National Zoo, the Giraffe Conservation Foundation, and the National Geographic Society.  Guest lecturer:  Dr. Patrick Shih, IUB Informatics – of course! 

Week 13 Final Presentations (9-10-minute video reflections on “ACI: past, present, and future”.) 

For more information on any of the Animal Informatics programs, visit

A new course being offered in Fall 2021 in Psychological and Brain Sciences may be of interest to you. Note that this course can be used toward fulfillment of the Environmental/Developmental/Cognitive perspective:


PSY-P457: Avian & Human Intelligence: An Evolutionary Perspective | Geoffrey Bingham | Fall | Class #40185 | PY-115 | 30 | 16wk | P | Tue 9:25 AM-10:40 AM, Thu 9:25 AM-10:40 AM

See brief, informal description below:



P457 Avian and Human Intelligence in Evolutionary Perspective: How Things Change!


The course will consist of 4 topics in order, each corresponding to a book and other readings.  


1) Evolution of birds from dinosaurs (Theropods).  This work has seen huge advancements

in the last decade with many fossil discoveries in China.


2) Recent research on bird cognitive (e.g. tool making, problem solving, etc) abilities and

reassessment of the nature of their brains in the context of the evolution story.

In this assessment, birds have gone from simple mechanical idiots to organisms 

with rather remarkable abilities. 


3) Big changes in the human evolution story following developments in the last

decade in evolutionary genetics methods and discoveries coupled with the fossil evidence.  

Diversity and variability throughout is one of the big themes.  Here a central reference is 

David Reich’s 2018 book.


4) Related re-evaluation of Neanderthals and their abilities and relation to homo 

and modern humans. 

Plant/Animal/Human/Insect/Fungi/Bacteria: Multi-species relations


Fall 2021

Monday 3:15-5:45pm

Student Building 005

Dr. Rebecca Lave





  1. Course Overview

Humans are profoundly intertwined with other species, from mosquitos and dogs to fruit trees and mushrooms. But how are these complex interrelations structured: by dependence, domination, co-constitution?  How can we change our research practices to better understand multi-species interactions, and to “hear” other species when they “speak” to us?  Do biophysical differences between species require us to employ different approaches for each member of the communities we study? Finally, how can we write stories of multispecies community and encounter in non-dualistic language?


This seminar focuses on how scholars from a range of disciplines, including Anthropology, Ethology, Geography, History and Sociology, grapple with these questions.  We will also explore a range of ways of presenting multi-species research: not just academic books and articles, but also popular science writing, podcasts, novels, and children’s books. I expect seminar participants to concentrate their efforts on developing a deep understanding of the course materials through attentive reading, weekly response papers, class discussions, and in-class writing exercises. There are no exams or research papers.



  1. Office Hours and Email

If you wish to talk with me outside of class, I will have office hours on Tuesdays, Wednesdays, and Thursdays from 1 to 3pm in my office, 312 Student Building. The sign-up sheet for my office hours can be found here.


If you wish to contact me via email, my address is  Please be aware that I usually do not check email in the evenings or on weekends.  Also, please use respectful email practices, such as:

  • Include the course number in the subject line of the email so that your message does not get lost in my email box.
  • If you are writing with a question about course organization, please double-check the syllabus first to be sure the answer isn’t there already.



III. Grading

Grades in this course will be based on:

  1. Attendance and course participation: 30%
  2. Weekly reading responses:  50%
  3. Final paper: 20%


I grade using a point scale.  For course grades, I do not use a curve, but instead use percentages:

A+ = 99 – 100%                                      

A = 94 – 98%                                           

A- = 90 – 93%                                         

B+ = 87 – 89%                                        

B = 83 – 86%                                           

B- = 80 – 82%                                          

C+ = 77 – 79%                                        

C = 73 – 76%                                           

C- = 70 – 72%

D+ = 67 – 69%

D = 63 – 66%

D- = 60 – 62%

F = 59% or less


Course participation (30% of grade)

I expect each of you to attend every course meeting prepared to discuss the week’s reading.  Your participation in discussion will constitute a substantial portion of your grade.  You must have your copy of the assigned reading available during each class meeting, as we will frequently make reference to particular passages.

Because this course meets only once a week, and because it is cumulative (each week builds on the one before), I expect you to miss no more than one class.


Reading responses (50% of course grade)

A second component of the course will be weekly reading responses. Undergraduates’ reading responses should be 1.5-2 single-spaced pages in length; graduate students’ should be 2.5-3pp.  These short papers should clearly and concisely present a summary of the arguments presented in the week’s assigned reading, followed by your critical evaluation of those arguments and how they tie into arguments from previous readings.  


A few tips for writing strong response papers:

  • Summarize each reading succinctly, focusing only on the author’s key terms and arguments.
  • Use your own words to explain concepts and ideas.
  • Choose quotes with care, keep them short, and always include parenthetical citations for them (e.g., Marx, 122).
  • Use the last 1-2 paragraphs of the responses to explain your thoughts about the arguments and key ideas for the week.  In this part of the paper, it is always a good idea to draw connections to previous readings in the course, to discuss connections among the readings for that week, and/or to address connections to your own research. You may also wish to draw connections to particularly relevant readings from your other classes.
  • Please use a readable 12 pt font, with 1” margins.
  • I grade for style, and also for punctuation, grammar, spelling, etc., so please edit with care.
  • You do not need to include a bibliography unless you reference work that is not on the syllabus for our class.


Based on the experience of past student, you should plan on spending 2-4 hours per week on your papers, in addition to time spent reading. I will drop your lowest reading response grade.


All response papers should be submitted electronically via Canvas by noon on Mondays.


The paper is your entrance ticket to class: you are not welcome without it.


Final paper (20% of course grade)

The final component of the course will be a short paper that succinctly explains your take on the key arguments of the course.  Undergraduates’ papers should be a 2-3pp single-spaced; graduate students’ papers can be 3-5pp single-spaced.  Final papers will be due via Canvas no later than Tuesday, May 3rd (during finals week).


Remember that I grade for style and usage as well as content, so you should carefully proofread your final paper before submitting it. 



  1. Course Readings

Articles are available in the Files section of our Canvas site.  Ebook copies of the books listed below will be available from the IU library, but you may which to purchase some or all from the bookstore of your choice. Most will be easy to find used. Two of the books (Ureta & Flores and Woelfle-Erskine) may not be out in time for the class; if that is the case, I will provide proofs. 

  • Biehler, D. 2013. Pests in the City: Flies, Bedbugs, Cockroaches & Rats. Edited by William Cronon, Weyerhauser Environmental Books. Seattle: University of Washington.
  • Despret, Vinciane. 2016. What Would Animals Say If We Asked the Right Questions? Minneapolis: University of Minnesota Press.
  • Haraway, Donna. 2003. The companion species manifesto: Dogs, people, and significant otherness. Chicago: Prickly Paradigm Press.
  • Nippert-Eng, Christena. 2015. Watching Closely. Oxford University Press.
  • Ogden, Laura. 2011. Swamplife: People, Gators, and Mangroves Entangled in the Everglades. Minneapolis: University of Minnesota Press.
  • Parreñas, Juno Salazar. 2018. Decolonizing Extinction: The Work of Care in Orangutan Rehabilitation. Durham, NC: Duke University Press.
  • Robbins, Paul. 2007. Lawn People: How Grasses, Weeds, and Chemicals Make Us Who We Are. Philadelphia: Temple University Press.
  • Tsing, Anna Lowenhaupt. 2015. The Mushroom at the End of the World: On the possibility of life in capitalist ruins. Princeton, NJ: Princeton University Press.
  • Ureta, Sebastián and Patricio Flores. 2021. Residual Ecologies. University of California Press.
  • von Uexküll, Jakob. 2010 [1936]. A Foray into the Worlds of Animals and Humans. Minneapolis: University of Minnesota Press.
  • Woelfle-Erskine, Cleo. 2021. Underflows.  University of Washington Press.
  • Yong, Ed. 2016. I Contain Multitudes: The Microbiomes within Us and a Grander View of Life. New York, NY: Harper Collins.



*** Readings are subject to change based on course discussions and other factors***



Week 1.  Course Introduction

  • In class: a variety of short popular press readings on multispecies communities.



Week 2. Companion species

  • Haraway, Donna. 2003. The companion species manifesto: Dogs, people, and significant otherness. Chicago: Prickly Paradigm Press.
  • Lorimer, Jamie. 2010. "Elephants as companion species: The lively biogeographies of Asian elephant conservation in Sri Lanka." Transactions of the Institute of British Geographers N.S. 35 (4):491-506.
  • Greenhough, Beth. 2012. "Where species meet and mingle: Endemic human-virus relations, embodied communication, and more-than-human agency at the Common Cold Unit 1946-90." Cultural Geographies 19 (3):281-301.



Week 3. Animals as Capital, Labor, and Commodities

  • 2 “Value-added Dogs and Lively Capital” in Haraway, Donna. 2017. When Species Meet. Minneapolis: University of Minnesota.
  • Hribal, Jason. 2003. ""Animals are part of the working class": A challenge to labor history." Labor History 44 (4):435-53.
  • Collard, Rosemary, and Jessica Dempsey. 2017. "Capitalist Natures in Five Orientations." Capitalism Nature, Socialism 28 (1):78-97.
  • Wadiwel, Dinesh. 2018. "Chicken harvesting machine: Animal labor, resistance, and the time of production." South Atlantic Quarterly 117 (3):527-549.



Week 4. Translation, Actor Networks and Nonhuman Agency

  • Callon, Michel. 1986. "Some Elements of a Sociology of Translation: Domestication of the Scallops and the Fisherman of St. Brieuc Bay." In The Science Studies Reader, edited by Biagioli, 67-83. London: Routledge. Original edition, 1986.
  • Latour, Bruno. 1983. "Give Me a Laboratory and I Will Raise the World." In The Science Studies Reader, edited by Biagioli, 258-275. London: Routledge. Original edition, 1983.
  • Robbins, Paul. 2007. Lawn People: How Grasses, Weeds, and Chemicals Make Us Who We Are. Philadelphia: Temple University Press.
  • Sayes, Edwin. 2014. "Actor-Network Theory and methodology: Just what does it mean to say that nonhumans have agency?" Social Studies of Science 44 (1):134-149.



Week 5. Queering Ecology

  • Hayward, Eva. 2010. "Fingeryeyes: Impressions of cup corals." Cultural Anthropology 25 (4):577-99.
  • Woelfle-Erskine, Cleo. 2021. Underflows: Transfiguring Rivers, Queering Ecology. University of Washington Press.



Week 6. Meaning and Ethology

  • von Uexkull, Jakob. 2010 [1936]. A Foray into the Worlds of Animals and Humans. Minneapolis: University of Minnesota Press. (pp.41-135)
  • Excerpts from Despret, Vinciane. 2016. What Would Animals Say If We Asked the Right Questions? Minneapolis: University of Minnesota Press. Read the following chapters, plus any that interest you:
    • “C for Corporeal: Is alright to urinate in front of animals?”
    • “Q for Queer: Are penguins coming out of the closet?”
    • “U for Umwelt: Do beasts know ways of being in the world?”
    • “V for Versions: Do chimpanzees die like we do?”
    • “W for Work: Why do we say that cows don’t do anything?”
  • Kohn, Eduardo. 2007. “How Dogs Dream: Amazonian Natures and the Politics of Transspecies Engagement.” American Ethnologist 34(1):3-24.



Week 7. Necropolitics and Care

  • Parreñas, Juno Salazar. 2018. Decolonizing Extinction: The Work of Care in Orangutan Rehabilitation. Durham, NC: Duke University Press.
  • Biermann, C., and B. Mansfield. 2014. "Biodiversity, Purity and Death: Conservation Biology as Biopolitics." Environment & Planning D: Society and Space 32 (2):257-73.
  • Hennessey, Elizabeth. 2019. Chapter 6 in On the Backs of Tortoises. Yale University Press.
    • Field trip to Indianapolis Zoo in preparation for Week 8



Week 8. Watching Gorillas

  • Nippert-Eng, Christena. 2016. Gorillas Up Close. New York: Henry Holt.
  • Nippert-Eng, Christena, John Dominski, and Miguel Martinez. 2017. What is Baby Gorilla Doing? New York, NY: Henry Holt.
  • Excerpts from Nippert-Eng, Christena. 2015. Watching Closely: A Guide to Ethnographic Observation. Oxford: Oxford University Press.



Week 9. Assemblages: Alligators, Grasses, and Speculative Wonder

  • Ogden, Laura. 2011. Swamplife: People, Gators, and Mangroves Entangled in the Everglades. Minneapolis: University of Minnesota Press.



Week 10. Plant Cognition and Communication

  • Parise, André Geremia, Monica Gagliano, and Gustavo Maia Souza. 2020. "Extended cognition in plants: is it possible?" Plant signaling & Behavior 15 (2). doi: 10.1080/15592324.2019.1710661.
  • Podcasts:



Week 11.  Trees as Subjects

  • Powers, Richard. Overstory
  • Stone, Christopher D. 2010 [1972]. "Should trees have standing?" Southern California Law Review 45:450-501.



Week 12. World-Making and Collaborative Survival: Fungi

  • Tsing, Anna Lowenhaupt. 2015. The Mushroom at the End of the World: On the possibility of life in capitalist ruins. Princeton, NJ: Princeton University Press.
  • Tsing, Anna Lowenhaupt, Andrew S. Mathews, and Nils Bubandt. 2019. "Patchy Anthropocene: Landscape structure, multispecies history, and the retooling of Anthropology."  Curren Anthropology 60. doi: 10.1086/703391.



Week 13. Humans are Multispecies Communities: Microbes

  • Yong, Ed. 2016. I Contain Multitudes: The Microbiomes within Us and a Grander View of Life. New York, NY: Harper Collins. (popular press)



Week 14. Vermin

  • Biehler, D. 2013. Pests in the City: Flies, Bedbugs, Cockroaches & Rats. Seattle: University of Washington.
  • Mavhunga, Clapperton. 2011. "Vermin beings: On pestiferous animals and human game." Social Text 29 (1 106):151-176.
  • “Jews” from Raffles, Hugh. 2010. Insectopedia. New York, NY: Pantheon Books.
  • Romero, Adam. 2016. "Commercializing chemical warfare: citrus, cyanide, and an endless war." Agriculture and Human Values 33 (1):3-26.



Week 15: Expanding beyond the living

  • Ureta and Flores. 2021. Residual Ecologies: Finding Life within Extraction. University of California Press
  • Deloria Jr., Vine. 1986. “American Indian Metaphysics." Winds of Change:2-3.
  • Kimmerer, Robin Wall. 2015. "Learning the grammar of animacy." The Moon Magazine.
  • Tallbear, Kim. 2011. “Why Interspecies Thinking Needs Indigenous Standpoints.” Cultural Anthropology.




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Fellowship, Scholarship, + Award Deadlines

CISAB awards two summer study scholarships each year to aid outstanding Animal Behavior majors at IU Bloomington with the costs of summer field courses, internships, or research experiences in fields relevant to the study of animal behavior. These awards help to defray costs of travel and fees for these experiences.

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Goodson Prize for Art in Science

Dr. Jim Goodson was a vibrant member of the CISAB community. In addition to being a consummate neuroscientist and critical thinker, Jim was also extraordinarily gifted at capturing the beauty of his science via images, of both his study subjects and his histological material. The Goodson Prize for Art in Science recognizes outstanding research images from CISAB members that are not just scientifically meaningful but are also beautiful. Winning images are showcased both in the CISAB house and on our website.

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To recognize some of our many outstanding Animal Behavior majors, CISAB Undergraduate Curriculum Committee has established a new award for Excellence in Thesis Research in Animal Behavior.


Current Ph.D. and postdoctoral students are eligible for up to 12 months of stipend support through opportunities offered by both the Center for the Integrative Study of Animal Behavior (CISAB) and the Common Themes in Reproductive Diversity (CTRD). Applications are due in February each year.

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CISAB founding member William J. Rowland was devoted to the study of animal behavior, and a strong advocate for mentoring and training undergraduates in research, particularly undergraduates who were in one way or another disadvantaged in their opportunities to get research experience. The Bill Rowland Mentoring Award was established in Bill’s memory to recognize graduate students who have served as outstanding research mentors to undergraduates. Recomendations are due in February each year.

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Established in memory of Hanna Kolodziejski, a remarkable graduate student in CISAB and the Evolution, Ecology, and Behavior program in Biology, this fellowship is an annual award for a graduate student who, like Hanna, shows academic talent in both research and teaching, and who demonstrates a commitment to the community through service or outreach programs. The fellowship is open to all CISAB and Biology graduate students, with a preference given to members of CISAB and Evolution, Ecology & Behavior (EEB) students. Recomendations are due in February each year.

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